More than three weeks after a tornado wiped out or damaged many businesses and homes in Salyersville, officials said there are signs of hope. and some are already rebuilding.
Business owners and the County Judge Executive said they are just trying to focus on the future but they will never forget what they have been through.
“As soon as the insurance allotted us money, I said let's tear it down, I don't want to look at it anymore, let's get it started,” said Ginger Oney who owns the Subway in Magoffin County’s downtown Salyersville.
Oney said she and her husband have been operating at that location since 2004.
She and other business owners in the town have continued to plan for the future. Oney said she had hope when she looked at what was left of her restaurant.
“There has to besomething to push forward for, you can't just sit and dwell on well it's gone,” said Oney.
Officials said the 300 block of Mountain Parkway East was known to many as “Restaurant Row.”
Many of those restaurants and other businesses were hit the hardest by the EF-3 tornado.
It was not known right after the storm how many would rebuild but now officials have a better idea.
“Several of the businesses are coming back,” said Charles "Doc" Hardin, Magoffin County Judge Executive.
“Several are thinking about it and there are two or three we have not heard from yet.”
Hardin said he knew the Advance Auto Parts and Subway were definitely on their way to restoration.
Oney said she was just happy that what she lost can be replaced.
“To find out later that all the homes that had been lost was the bad part, but no deaths, no deaths,” said Oney.
Oney said while it was tough she wanted to begin the demolition process as soon as possible. All that remains of the subway is a 5,000 square foot rectangular hole filled with crumbled rock. The slats of what used to be the roof sit in a nearby field. She said she did keep one item from all the rubble to remind them of where they have been.
“What we saved from the rubble was a brick, it is sitting on our front porch right now,” said Oney.
She said it to remind she and her family of “what can happen and did happen.”
County officials said they have learned one thing through all of this.
“The way that all of eastern Kentucky and Kentucky has pulled together during all of this disaster has renewed my faith in people in general and Kentuckians in particular,” said Hardin.
The owner of Stevens’ Trucks said they continued to operate even when half the roof was gone. Many around town said that other businesses have done the same.